The federal government is fast-tracking funding to municipalities across Canada.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the $2.2-billion is from the Gas Tax Fund and will be sent in one payment this year to help cities and towns facing a cash crunch because of COVID-19. The money is typically sent out in two payments every year.
It means the city will see over 12 million dollars coming into their bank account.
Mayor Michael Fougere says that money, which is not new money, is welcome, but it can only be the start.
“Short-term it allows us a chance to invest money into projects.” Fougere said. “We have asked for a tripling of the gas tax which would be helpful to every municipality in Canada.”
Fougere adds with the money not being new money it was something already in the budget, but not receiving it would have proven to be problematic.
“We anticipated having this money so it won’t have a tremendous impact for this year.” Fougere said. “Had we not had it, it would have been a different story, but this means we can go ahead with the projects booked.”
Trudeau called the fast-track spending a first step, adding that anything else would need to happen hand-in-hand with the provinces, which have jurisdiction over municipalities.